Date: 11/16/20 12:43 pm
From: Scott Morrical <smorrica...>
Subject: Re: [VTBIRD] Really late Empid
I tried to send this earlier, but I think it bounced for some reason. Sorry if this is duplicated. I have quite a bit of field experience with Western empids. That being said, empids are empids, and they are not always identifiable. As Pipit noted, Hammond's does wing-flick and tail-flip a lot. Dusky does both of these things but less frequently on average. The two species are tricky to separate (sometimes impossible) without hearing vocalizations. Hammond's would appear compact in size, large-headed, small-billed, and relatively short-tailed. The primary extension is long (this is one of the best field marks to separate Hammonds from Dusky and Least), but so is that of Alder. The eyering of Hammond's would stand out conspicuously against its dark face, and probably help to eliminate Alder.

Scott Morrical

Sent from my iPhone

> On Nov 16, 2020, at 3:21 PM, David Guertin <dave...> wrote:
>
> I just went out for a third unsuccessful attempt at refinding the flycatcher. No luck, but I did find a Sharp-shinned Hawk in precisely the spot where I last saw the flycatcher. Just sayin'...
>
> I'm going to try again in the morning.
>
> Dave G.
>
>> On 11/16/20 3:01 PM, Susan Fogleman wrote:
>> So are there folks headed over to Dave’s place to look for this critter? If I lived closer than central NH, I sure would be!
>>
>> Susan Fogleman
>>
>> Susan Fogleman
>> <sfogleman...>
>>
>> “The universe is under no obligation to make sense to you.”
>> Neil deGrasse Tyson
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>>> On Nov 16, 2020, at 2:57 PM, Fred and Chris Pratt <pipit...> wrote:
>>>
>>> I am a bit rusty on western empi's but I think wing-flicking and tail-wagging was considered helpful in separating Hammond's from Dusky Flycatcher and other small empi's. Another tail-wagging western empid is Gray Flycatcher but he is larger, wags tail only.
>>>
>>> Fred Pratt
>>>
>>> On 11/16/2020 11:25 AM, David Guertin wrote:
>>>> Well, this was a shock. I haven't seen an Empid in over two months, and yet here was one this morning in my yard in Cornwall, braving the mid-November chill. This was one extremely tardy (and probably cold and hungry) flycatcher.
>>>>
>>>> Here are the notes I submitted to eBird: My first impression was that of a stubby, short-tailed flycatcher that suggested Eastern Wood-Pewee, but the combination of bold white wing bars and obvious eye ring made it clearly an Empid. Constant wing-flicking and tail wagging. Gray throat, grayish sides. The prominence of the eye ring has me leaning towards Alder over Willow, but this time of year with fresh plumage, who knows? I also can't rule out Least, but the behavior seemed more Alderish. Found in the wild raspberry patch between our yard and the adjacent farm fields.
>>>>
>>>> I'm trying to recall if I've seen Least Flycatchers do that constant nervous wing-flicking thing, but I can't recall, and my field guides don't note that for Least.
>>>>
>>>> Any flycatcher gurus want to weigh in? Whatever it was, it was certainly unexpected!
>>>>
>>>> Dave G.
>>>>
 
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